HILLSBORO, Ore. -- Hillsboro police say a man shot and killed his 6-year-old son before turning the gun on himself in a field near a church.
Police Lt. Michael Rouches says a passerby found two people laying in a field behind the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the 5500 block of Southeast Golden Road at about 4:30 p.m. Tuesday.
Arriving officers found the bodies of a 54-year-old man and 6-year-old boy, Rouches says.
Police say the man shot his son in the head with a handgun and then fatally shot himself. Two used shells were found nearby, they say.
The man's car was parked in the nearby lot, according to officers.
There is no connection between the shooting and the nearby church, officers say, and the motive remains unclear.
Police haven’t released their identities, but a police spokesman says it’s believed the man lived nearby with his sister.
Family members told officers there were no issues they were aware of.
Andy Frame says he called 911 after his girlfriend saw something strange.
“She heard a noise at about 11:30 and she didn’t think anything of it. She heard it again, so she stood up ... looked out and saw the car and what she thought were two people, but she wasn't sure," Frame says. "It was shocking. It was just shocking. We’re trying to think in our heads, ‘Why did he do it? What’s going on?’”
Other nearby residents are also grappling with the shooting.
“It’s just sad,” says neighbor Cynthia Anderson. “Why would anybody kill their son?”
Amy Northern lives next to the field and says she didn’t hear or see anything unusual until investigators arrived.
“We saw the fire truck pull in. Then we saw someone put tarps on the body. Didn't realize that there were two of them,” she says.
So sad. My dad and I used to ride around that parking lot and play in that field when I was a kid. The church is like literally within a mile of my parents house. It's really sad that a father would take the life of his son. A few years back a father drowned his kids and shot himself in a nearby wetlands as well. I can't imagine taking your own child's life.